July 7th, 2009

Kuma Bear

Where's Kuma?

I still have a huge pile of photos from Westercon to process and caption, but we also have photos that Lisa took on her trip to Phoenix. While passing through Barstow, she stopped to look at the older preserved equipment parked there. Kuma Bear decided to hide on one of the locomotives.

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After you've checked out the photo under the cut, you can see where Kuma Bear was hiding.
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    World Series of Poker
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Kevin and Lisa

Looking for the Bright Side

While it's inconvenient and expensive -- $100/day hotel room plus meals -- I reckon that being stuck here in Tempe while we wait for the repairs to be finished on the pickup truck could be worse. The hotel room is decently comfortable. The staff of the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel have been very nice and very cooperative. Downtown Tempe, which is right outside the hotel's door, is pleasant enough as long as you stay out of the sun, with lots of places to eat and services like the CVS/pharmacy a few blocks down Mill Avenue. There's a local free circulator bus system that will take us to most of the places that are beyond walking distance that we might want to go while we are here (including the car shop where the pickup is right now). The internet connection in the room is solid and sufficiently fast for me to get my work done, and it's included in the room cost instead of contracted out as a separate profit center. I could use Skype to attend the two conference calls for which I was scheduled yesterday, and I can log in to my work machines as easily here as if I were at home -- that is, they haven't blocked VPN access the way some hotels' systems seem to have done.

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We've been making the most we can manage of this sojourn in Tempe, and I guess I shouldn't complain too much, but I'm very aware of how much money this is costing us.
Pensive Kevin

Rays of Financial Hope

They do a very good job of hiding it within the web site, but I managed to find the trip-interruption insurance claim form that is theoretically part of my AAA membership. Again, in theory, it's supposed to cover up to $1000 of hotel, meal, and alternative transportation expenses incurred due to vehicle breakdown. It doesn't cover the vehicle repairs themselves, but you do have to include the bills as part of the proof that something happened. Well, all I can do is submit the claim after I get home and see what happens. If they turn it down, I'm no worse off than I am now.
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    okay okay
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